Blue Ribbon Preview on ESPN

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Blue Ribbon Preview on ESPN

Post by Stonehouse on Thu Oct 18, 2007 8:50 am

Hey folks... if you've got ESPN Insider, you can read the Blue Ribbon Preview for Portland and the rest of the WCC. Here's Portland's link:

http://insider.espn.go.com/ncb/insider/news/story?id=3038990

It's a very good preview, with lots of quotes from Reveno. I would just post it in here, but Angelo from the Zag board turned in the Dons Central board last year for doing that, and I don't think PilotNut wants any cease and desist letters from ESPN coming his way! Smile

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Re: Blue Ribbon Preview on ESPN

Post by Rob's Jacket on Thu Oct 18, 2007 10:31 am

Can you give us a summary? Just a little one?

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Re: Blue Ribbon Preview on ESPN

Post by Stonehouse on Thu Oct 18, 2007 12:22 pm

Of course, of course. Been a bit busy this morning.

First and foremost, it's a pretty positive review, and Blue Ribbon isn't the type to just fawn all over every program and give the PR spin. So that's encouraging... it sounds like they are seeing some of the positive indications that we are as well.

Here's a nice quote from Rev talking about recruiting:

"The kids we're going after are high-character, overachieving kids who come here for a great education. They've got the ability to get better, and it's up to us to put them in a position to win games. That's the kind of kids we got at Stanford.''

I think we've seen that already with the guys he has brought in.

Anyway, it goes on to talk quite about about Watson and how he has improved. Rev said that he has been working on his shot a lot all summer and that he is capable of slashing to the basket and is a strong defender.

Also says that Rev expects big things from Taishi, and you can tell Rev loves the way he plays by how he describes him as tough, gritty, skilled, etc.

One possible surprise - Rev says he expects Niedermeyer to flourish this year.

Lots of ink is spent on Smeulders, and I am starting to feel like he is going to be our best player this year. Here's a quote from Rev on him:

''He spent the year working on his game, working before games, after practices, lifting extra weights. He committed himself to improving, and he played with the best national team this last year and was one of their leading scorers, so he's a guy we're really excited about.''

Good stuff about Sikma too, who Rev says does all the "little things" like defense, blocking shots, good anticipation, unselfish, good passer from the high post, etc.

Rev says that Kramer is one of those guys who likes contact in the post and will be a good banger in the paint - definitely good news, since both Smeulders and Sikma are a bit soft.

Only a brief mention of Hannibal, which isn't surprising... I think he's definitely a project for this season.

Also only a brief mention of Raivio, which surprised me a bit. Rev said that he will play some point and some two-guard. Ditto for Stohl, who Rev said can back-up the one and shoot it from the two.

Finally, there was some info in there about BJ Porter that I didn't know... he was a second-team all-state quarterback and won the state high jump title with a 6-10 (!!!) which was the fith-highest jump of ALL prep athletes in the country. WOW WOW WOW!!! I didn't know that at all. Very exciting!

Anyway, this is how they ended the preview:

"The Pilots are young, but that's to be expected in the second year of a young coach's rebuilding program.

They've got a slew of raw inside players who should be helped by working with Reveno, who at 6-8 was a former post himself and earned a reputation as one of the top post-player coaches in the country when he was at Stanford.

The race for second place is pretty wide open in the WCC, and Reveno is hanging his hat on his team's ability to overcome its youth with talent to emerge from the pack. ''It's really tightly grouped except for Gonzaga,'' he said.

''There's not a lot of separation between schools, which is encouraging, because when you finish seventh, that's what you try to tell yourself.''

Keep an eye on the Pilots -- they probably won't get over the top this year, but the building blocks are in place for a team that hopes to challenge the Zags in the near future."

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